Speed Kills - But Who's To Blame?

27/02/2013 09:08

Upon randomly observing the interior of my car this morning, I took note that my vehicle has the capability of reaching speeds of up to 220km/h. 220. And, naturally, more expensive cars can go even faster. The highest speed we are allowed to hit in South Africa is 120km/h, yet my car can go 100 beyond this. My question – if it is illegal to drive beyond this, why are we given the option to?

We all know how easy it is to accidentally exceed the limit without noticing. You drive at 60kph, while listening to the radio, and next thing you know you look down to see you’re pushing 80 – and boom! Fresh speed ticket in the post. This is really very difficult to avoid the whole time, especially if you are in a rush.

If one exceeds the speed limit by 10kph or more, we are given a fine. If we exceed to ungodly speeds we are immediately given a court date. Is it a massive money making scheme for the government? Is it sneakily laying temptation out for us on a golden platter so we can break the rules, get into trouble, and be used as examples of what not to do? I do not understand. These examples wouldn’t need to be set if the option to break that rule were not there. Are the countless casualties and deaths every day on our roads just another means of population control, and the government would never risk taking that away? Do the hospital bills of people injured in collisions due to speeding make the government so much money?

Now obviously a large percentage of people enjoy speed. People purchase certain cars purely for the speed. In this case, fine, but for those who are careful and do not wish to speed, I feel we should have the choice to purchase a car that does not let us go over a certain speed. The only cars that should be made with the capabilities of achieving higher speeds should be those involved in professional races, otherwise, our normal everyday cars that we only need to get from A to B, should be designed so as not to be able to go any faster than 120. This way, there would never be anybody exceeding the speed limit. There would also be fewer accidents caused by speeding lunatic cowboys. There would never be another ticket issued again. But oh no, the government would never have this – What would replace the millions of rand that flows in everyday through speeding fines?

On the other hand - Another issue, obviously, is that sometimes we need to speed to rush someone to the hospital etc. Yet if a camera catches us, we would get a speeding fine. How is this fair? When all we were trying to do is to save a life? Perhaps all cars should be built with flashing lights like ambulances and police cars, and if we are in a desperate situation like this, all we do is switch on our flashing lights with the siren, and not only would people around us on the road know that it is an emergency, but speed cameras could pick up that it was an emergency and we should not be fined. Ambulances are not the only vehicles that transport people in need of live saving attention.


An idea – How about cars are designed to have a special dial or system inside, that we can set while driving, for different roads with different speed limits? If we are going to be driving on a road that is 60kph, we just click a button that will not allow the car to go any faster than this, no matter how much attention we lose. (Or there can be a signal system that can do this for us automatically - the car does the thinking for us) Sure, it would probably be highly complex to figure out, but is the concept not worth a bit of thought? By implementing systems like this, we could also avoid imposter policemen who trick your money out of you (A common crime of corruption in South Africa)

How about a sensor that beeps or makes some sort of sound every time we are going over the speed limit? (Without having to fork out for a Garmin or Tom-Tom) Why doesn’t this come standard in all cars that are to be used on public roads? Why do governments around the world not think more on this? Why are we in denial that speeding is actually a problem that could be completely eradicated if world-wide governments could get off their backsides and stop caring about money money money the whole time? Sure, you may say that there are “more important” problems in the world; hunger, rape etc etc, but there is always time to sort out every single little problem raised, and seeing as speeding kills so many people on our roads everyday, I do think it is indeed a pretty damn important matter.

What’s YOUR opinion on this topic at hand? Be sure to let me know your thoughts!

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